The Bowmanville Zoo went ahead with its fund raiser this weekend despite controversy over the Bieber family making an appearance. As Joe Scarpelli tells us, Justin Bieber was a no show, but his father Jeremy made a 10 thousand dollar donation.
Andy Curnew had his first encounter with the Bowmanville Zoo back in early May, when he threw an engagement party for his good friend, Jeremy Beiber, father of pop star Justin Bieber. It was at Curnew’s home where Justin took a picture petting a tiger from the Bowmanville Zoo. He was quickly slammed by PETA for using the animal for entertainment purposes.
Andy Curnew “As the host of the event, I felt I had a social responsibility to come to the zoo and see if there was any legitimacy to this animal abuse.”
Curnew threw a birthday party for his three-year-old daughter at the zoo on Sunday. Curnew said he invited the Bieber family. The Zoo’s Alex Haditaghi says Jeremy Bieber was the only family member who responded to the invite.
Alex Haditaghi “All the pressure and everything, I understand why they couldn’t make it…they got attacked by everyone, by PTEA supporters.”
Tickets to the event deemed “Bieber Family Fun Day” were being sold for $295.
After Jeremy Bieber took to Twitter and said he doesn’t support any zoo, nor will he host any fundraiser, the zoo was forced to refund all tickets. Ticket prices for the fundraiser were dropped to $23. Very few people turned out for the event.
Andy Curnew “People that were going to pay $295 to come to the zoo if Justin was here…they were going to do that because they wanted Justin to sign an autograph and treat him like a zoo animal and not because they have any genuine interest in the relocation of these animals.”
Dragons Den “Dragon” Michael Wekerle is a friend of Curnew and attended the party. He says he personally knows people who refuse to come to the zoo because of the animal cruelty allegations facing owner Michael Hackenberger. Video has surfaced showing him repeatedly whipping a tiger.
Michael Wekerle “I don’t think a wise person can make a statement if they haven’t witnessed or they haven’t done their due diligence on anything. I think knowledge is the key to life and if you do your work and you find out that this isn’t the right place, then that’s your opinion, at least it’s an informed opinion.”
Curnew and Jeremy Bieber each donated $10,000 to the zoo to help with the animals’ relocation. The Bowmanville Zoo is set to close its doors for good on October 10.